18 April 2014

Now Online: Pennsylvania State Death Certificates, 1906-1924

April 17, 2014--Pennsylvania State 1906-1924 death certificates are now online. This marks the first of multiple releases through the next year. Eventually, all deaths before the 50 year privacy window (1964) will be online, with an additional year anticipated to become available every year afterward.

 Search the collection (click here).

Free access is available to PA residents, and to everyone who visits select libraries or a Family History Center. https://familysearch.org/locations/

Learn more about free access for PA residents (click here).

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07 April 2014

Illegal Immigration and Love | Lady Liberty, Siren of the Underworld

Paraphrasing one of my friends: "We've been stuck down here for over eleven years! Eleven years wasted on this border because my husband crossed to be with us - is like getting handed a life sentence for an 'act of love'"

I recently registered to vote in Utah, but I could not bring myself to register as a republican as I have done every other time. I agree with many important platform points of the Utah Republican Party, but their immigration statement sickens me.

"We oppose illegal immigration and all forms of ...legal status, for illegal immigrants. We support suspending automatic U.S. citizenship to children born to illegal immigrant parents... We oppose any temporary or 'guest' worker program that would offer an automatic path to citizenship. We believe that current laws against employing illegal immigrants should be vigorously enforced, particularly to stem the now too common crime of identity theft in obtaining employment." (read full platform)

Of course we all wish there was no illegal activity in the world, but the republican platform entirely misses the point that this illegal activity is largely a necessary act of love. There is no good legal option for countless families. America is lying through her teeth when she says "Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore." (The New Colossus, Lady Liberty) Her statues say it, her body language says it, but if you believe it for just a minute and actually step over the line and reach for her merciful hand she calls you an illegal, hunts you down, tears you from your young children, and exiles you to a nation you have not seen for decades. This is our lady liberty, lady of the underworld.

Why can't more republicans shake off their chains and wake up to admit what Jeb Bush says in simple terms? The illegal crossing of an immigrant is almost always an act of love that directly harms no-one. It is lady liberty who rears her evil head to punish those who dare believe her lies.